Asian toluene was flat to $3/mt lower on the back of thin trades

– Domestic East China slips from Fri

– Bullishness in Southeast Asia

Asian toluene was flat to $3/mt lower on the back of thin trades Tuesday. No bids or offers were heard during the  Market on Close assessment process Tuesday as market participants held back to observe the market amid uncertainties in the political and economic developments around the world. Throughout the day, hardly any market activity was heard on the FOB Korea and CFR China market. “Market is so quiet today, traders are holding back,” a Chinese trader said Tuesday. Earlier during the day, East China domestic prompt ex-tank was heard discussed at around Yuan 5,250/mt, which fell to Yuan 5,220/mt in the afternoon, and then rose back up to around Yuan 5,255/mt towards the close of the market. The East China domestic marker was assessed at Yuan 5,255/mt, converting to an import parity of around $648/mt and was down some Yuan 10/mt from the previous day. In downstream market news, toluene diisocyanate was heard to be weak in China, contributing to the quiet market on Tuesday, market sources said. Despite the lackluster FOB Korea and CFR China markets on Tuesday, bullishness was observed in Southeast Asia with a couple of producers heard to have shut their plants for maintenance. On that note, a producer in the region said Tuesday, “Our April cargoes are all booked,” as demand remains firm in Southeast Asia amid a supply shortage.

RATIONALE:

The FOB Korea marker was assessed at $642/mt FOB Korea on Tuesday, flat from the day before amid thin trades. The CFR China marker was assessed at $670/mt Tuesday, down $3/mt, tracking the domestic East China marker lower largely due to thin trades. The FOB Korea and CFR China markers take the average of the third and fourth half-month laycans, currently H1 and H2 April. The H1 and H2 April laycans were both assessed at $670/mt CFR China on Tuesday with the H2 March laycan also assessed at $677/mt CFR China, retaining the flat price structure from Tuesday.

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